Reading Guide Questions
Please be aware that this discussion guide may contain spoilers!
- In some ways, a polygamist family is very different
from most American families, yet in other ways,
very similar. How is Kyras family different from
your family? How are they the same? Were you
surprised by these similarities?
- Discuss the differences and similarities between
a religion and a cult. What specific events in the
book identify The Chosen as a cult?
- What is the role of powerand the lack of
poweramong The Chosen? How do these
differ for men? Women? Children? Teens?
How are the adults in Kyras life victims, and
how are they aggressors?
- There are stories of escapes and attempted
escapes from both before and after the current
Prophet comes to power. Indeed, one of
Kyras mothers indicates that she attempted
to run away. Others, like Kyras own parents,
never seem to seriously consider leaving.
Why do you think people would choose to
stay in this community?
- When Joshua says, The girls are for all the
older men, what are the practical implications?
Why are boys allowedor forcedto leave?
Why are the girls who attempt to escape chased
down and brought back?
- When Kyra, her sisters, and mothers travel to
town, they are subjected to curious and rude
stares and whispers. Have you ever felt the
way Kyra feels during this trip? How does this
trip affect Kyras view of herself, her family, and
- Patrick, the librarian, knows he takes a risk in
bringing books to Kyra. Do you think he fully
understands those risks? Do you think he
realizes his life might be in danger when he
decides to help Kyra escape from the
Compound in the mobile library?
- How does Patrick provide both the practical
means and some of the emotional strength
Kyra needs in order to make her escape? In
what ways does Kyras family enable her to
make her final escape? How does the
knowledge that her family will be punished for
her leaving both hinder and help her escape?
- What do you think of Kyras decision to leave?
While she obviously finds herself in an extreme
situation, does her dilemma remind you of any
difficult or complex choice you have had to
make? How did you ultimately decide?
- What do you think life will be like for Kyra
outside The Chosenboth in the beginning and
years later? Do you think she finds Joshua?
Does she go to college? Does she ever see her
family again? What sort of future do you imagine
Unless otherwise stated, this discussion guide is reprinted with the permission of St. Martin's Griffin.
Any page references refer to a USA edition of the book, usually the trade paperback version, and may vary in other editions.